Queensland Fire and Sydney Sixers quick Kara Sutherland is helping raise funds and awareness for Suicide Prevention Australia with a 24-hour treadmill run later this month.
"Plebs, Pros and Personalities for Suicide Prevention Australia (PPP4SPA) was founded in 2013 by a group of mates in Maroubra, Sydney, who had lost too many loved ones to suicide and wanted to do something to bring people together, raise awareness and make a difference," she said.
What started out as a couple of treadmills at Maroubra Bowling Club has grown to nine sites across the country. To date, over $300,000 has been raised for Suicide Prevention Australia and they're hoping to add more to that in 2016, as well as raising awareness of suicide and mental health in the process.
"I first got involved in the event in 2014 whilst living in Sydney. My best friend's dad took his life the previous year. After seeing the pain her and her family went through I just knew I had to try and do something to help reduce the number of people affected by Australia’s biggest killer of 15-44 year olds.
"I’ve since had two very close friends lose family members and there has been a stark increase in the number of youth suicides in my hometown of Grafton in country New South Wales. So, you could definitely say it’s a cause that’s very close to my heart," she explained.
The 24-hr treadmill marathon kicks off nation-wide at 6pm AEST on Friday 27 May. Kara is in charge of the Brisbane event, which will have three treadmills running - one for celebrities, one for members of the community who can pay $30 for 30 minutes and Kara's group of four, who will run the entire 24 hours between them.
"So far I’ve roped in most of the Queensland Fire girls, Channel 9 presenter Sam Squiers, Good Footballs founder Shane Primrose, NRL legend Michael Crocker, former AFL player Joey Daye and the founder of the event, Ben Higgs!"
If you want to get involved, you can sign up to take part in the run by heading to ppp4spa.com.au, where you can choose a preferred site and time slot.
If you can’t get down to your local venue during the event, you can donate to Suicide Prevention Australia by clicking here.